In June 2012, the Czech Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Prague Security Studies Institute (PSSI) and Vyškov Military Academy organized a two-week training seminar for Czech civilian experts and those interested in participating in Czech reconstruction and observation missions abroad (within NATO, EU, OSCE or UN). Responding to the need for NATO and EU member countries to increase the number of qualified and skilled civilians trained to take part in complex stabilization projects, crisis management and civilian-military operations around the world, the course was a pilot project designed to improve civilian resources and capabilities and to strengthen civilian-military coordination.
The first week of the course was held on June 4-8, 2012 in Prague at the Diplomatic Academy of the Czech MFA. The latter half of the course took place in Vyškov at the military training compound, from June 8-15. The lectures covered the following topics: civilian-military relations; the role of international organizations (NATO, EU, OSCE and UN) in conflict prevention and stabilization operations; field-work preparation – mission working environment and the role of religion and cultural norms in working with local population; the role of humanitarian and development organizations in conflict zones; working with local partners, monitoring, mentoring and advising; and EU/OSCE Electoral Observations Missions.
Among the speakers were: Kristen Farnum, subject matter expert, trainer, and mentor for US Departments of State, Defense and Agency for International Development (AID); Dan Grant, consultant to the American State and Defense Departments; Ingrid Halmová, an experienced mission member in pre- and post-conflict areas within OSCE, EU and international NGOs (ENEMO, The Carter Center) EOMs; Radek Khol, European External Action Service (EEAS); Šimon Pánek, Director of the Czech NGO People in Need; Michale Shaikh, Director of Country Operations in Campaign for Innocent Victims in Conflict (CIVIC) and former Senior Analyst in International Crisis Group; and Alexandr Sporýš and Petr Svačina from the Czech MFA. PSSI managed the program and organization of the first week of the course, which was focused on theoretical sessions.
The second week (June 8-15, 2012) consisted of intensive practical training, field-work simulations of challenging conflict environments, organized solely by the Vyškov Military Academy.
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